“I always felt London was an amalgamation of cultures. It is integral to the city.”
Long outspoken with her political views, Dua Lipa has spoken out about the mistreatment of migrants in the UK, especially in regards to the rhetoric used by government figures.
Last October, Suella Braverman (the UK’s home secretary) used a parliamentary speech to take a jab at “Albanian criminals”, arguing that open borders would be detrimental to Britain’s cultural landscape. Lipa – who was born in London to Kosovo-Albanian parents – has now responded to Braverman’s comment, saying in a new interview with The Sunday Times: “Of course it hurt. All those words thrown around about immigrants? I always felt London was an amalgamation of cultures. It is integral to the city. So when you hear the government talk about Albanians, for example, it hurts.”
Lipa went on to describe Braverman’s views (which are sadly held by many right-wing politicians in the UK and abroad) as “shortsighted and small-minded”, conceding that it is “the way a lot of people think”. She continued: “No matter how we try and change the rhetoric, there will always be those who think, ‘Immigrants are coming into the country and taking jobs!’ However, immigrants who have come here have earned their keep by working incredibly hard. There needs to be more empathy, because people don’t leave their country unless they have to out of necessity, out of fear for their family.”
Though she was born in London, Lipa has long held her Kosovo-Albanian heritage close to her chest. She was legally certified as an Albanian citizenship last November, being granted the honour in a ceremony with Albania’s president, Bajram Begaj. Lipa is fluent in Albanian (being her first language), and in 2016, she and her father Dukagjin (who performed in Kosovan rock band Oda) launched the Sunny Hill Foundation to raise funds for locals in need by holding concerts.
In other news, Lipa recently shared a new single called Dance The Night, which arrives as part of the soundtrack for the upcoming Barbie film. Lipa herself will star in the film as Mermaid Barbie, joining an ensemble cast featuring Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Kate McKinnon, Issa Rae, Hari Nef, Kingsley Ben-Adir, Simu Liu and many more. The flick will hit Australian cinemas on July 20.